Kratom is very much the International Man of Mystery. As of 2018, very little is known about the supplement. It wasn’t until I started working for a marijuana company that I first heard of these magical leaves from Southeast Asia. When I first bought powdered kratom, I thought it looked identical to finely ground marijuana and assumed the effects, uses, and consumption methods would be similar. Turns out, I was only half right. The long-term effects of kratom range both on the positive and not-so-positive side, according to medical professionals. Kratom is not marketed as a recreational drug, which could explain why a large percentage of the population has never heard of it or bothered to try it. Studies show kratom use has been on the rise in recent years, which suggests word of these leaves is spreading faster than the California wildfires. Here’s what we know so far about kratom.
What Are People Using Kratom For?
How Long Does it Last?
The problem with kratom, however, is that people start to feel so good and uplifted that they make it a regular thing. They make kratom a part of their daytime or nighttime routine. Suddenly, we’re looking at long-term use of the leaf. That’s where things get a little iffy based on medical reports.
Using Kratom Regularly
Hunger and Kratom Use
How Kratom Affects Sleep
- Higher blood pressure
- Heart disease
- Mood swings
- Memory issues
- Lower sex drive
Kratom: Great in Moderation
One last point to mention is that kratom has an external effect on your body, too. A small percentage of frequent users noticed hyperpigmentation of their cheeks, which occurs when patches of the skin turn darker than the normal pigment of other areas. This can make the skin look blotchy, patchy, and sickly. Hyperpigmentation can be reduced with the help of skincare and beauty products. I always heard that pure lemon essential oil is great for brightening and evening skin tone. I happen to use it every night before bed just because.
Okay, what have we learned today? Our goal was not to paint kratom in a negative light, but instead explore the medical long-term side effects of kratom. Please remember that there are positive side effects to kratom as well. Kratom is believed to be the solution to the opioid epidemic in America, as it offers similar pain-killing relief without extreme addiction.
Don’t buy into the rumor that kratom is an opioid itself. We’ve seen that printed on magazines and news headlines but it’s not true. Kratom comes from the same chemical family as the coffee tree, whereas opioids are a class of drugs naturally found in the opium poppy plant. Based on their origins, they cannot be the same thing.
The key takeaway here is to evaluate both sides, the good and bad, when dealing with kratom. The long-term effects of kratom should not be ignored, but they also should not overshadow all the good this leaf can do. Ultimately, if you plan to use kratom for a long-term or chronic condition, consider taking breaks and maybe even doing a kratom cleanse. These practices enable people to continue using kratom without the potential downsides.
Be safe out there!